Well, we've just got back from a fantastic week in Montgenevre! We were travelling by train to the Alps for the first time and I'll admit I was a bit nervous about making all the connections and for the whole journey to work. However, Daniel’s help and encouragement definitely gave me the confidence to go for it and I'm so glad we did.
We really enjoyed the Eurostar into Paris, got a private taxi transfer (www.city-airport-taxis.com) across the city (with a 7 year old in tow, I didn't fancy battling the Paris underground system) and then made the connection on the TGV down to Oulx. The train journeys were all very chilled, and we enjoyed watching DVDs, playing games and reading books. The final link into the resort also went smoothly as we had booked a transfer from Oulx to Montgenevre with local company Go Montgenevre.
All in all, we had a great time! The actual skiing was brilliant and we were very lucky with the weather - blue skies and sunshine all week and three metres of snow already on the ground and waiting for us. Thanks again for patiently answering all my questions and for encouraging us to try the train option. We'll definitely be doing it again next year as it was far more enjoyable, and better for the environment, than flying.
I have rather a difficult fear of flying and was desperate to find an alternative way to the Alps so that I could carry on with the sport I love but without the crippling fear at either end of the holiday. We certainly had more space than on a flight. We had enough room to set up a board game and to do colouring or watching DVDs. It was nice to be able to walk up and down to stretch our legs and to see a little bit of Paris on the way through. We liked seeing the countryside, especially as we got into the mountains - it's quite a peaceful way of travelling really.
The accommodation in Montgenevre (Chalets des Dolines with Peak Retreats) was probably one of the best I've ever stayed in. The apartment was surprisingly spacious and really well equipped and comfortable. The ski lockers were spacious too, and the heated boot racks meant that we started our day with lovely toasty toes! The resort is small and nightlife is minimal but that is exactly why we like it. We wanted a quiet, family-friendly resort where everything is in easy walking distance and that is what Montgenevre provides.
The only issue we had was that there are only two mountain restaurants and, because of their limited number, they were absolutely packed and it was very difficult to get a table. We ended up eating in the village most lunchtimes, which worked really well and gave us more choice, better value for money and a much better chance of getting a table.
I found the skiing to be very good and we were extremely lucky with the weather in the week we went. Lift queues were small to non-existent, which, given that we travelled in half term, was fantastic! One small quibble my husband had was that he found the grading of the slopes to be a bit harsh i.e. blues tended to be a bit steep sometimes and greens tended towards blues. As he is a not-very-confident early intermediate, he sometimes found this a bit intimidating.
Our seven-year old daughter (a total beginner) loved the nursery slope and the 'magic carpet' lift and she also enjoyed the sledging slope which is a great that the resort has it just off to the side of the main piste. All in all, we had a fantastic holiday and are already thinking about booking for next year - and we'll be going by train again, of course.